Some of the rarest birds in North America are found in the Grand Canyon now: The California Condor. At one time the population had gone down to as little as 22 birds, thanks to egg shell thinning due to pollution from various sources, and other habitat problems.
Several were released into the wild in Arizona, and eventually found their way here to the Grand Canyon.
Their range can be huge, so don't rely on seeing them.
However, these photos of the condors were taking near the South Kaibab Trailhead on Yaki Point, so if you want to try to find the same spot I saw them, and think they might be in that location, you are welcome to try there.
The photos of the display are taken inside the National Park headquarters building near the center of activitiy at South Rim and Grand Canyon Village. It gives you a good idea of what you are looking for.
You will notice a red head on the most mature birds, but they don't develop that color for a few years. The white under the wings is fairly unique, and will likely be your best bet. While the birds are huge, they are not necessarily obvious due to the heights at which they fly - it would be easy to mistake a very high flying condor with some other smaller bird that is less far away.
John Ivens Post no. 42,
The American Legion
and its Auxiliary
Grand Canyon National Park
May 30, 1929
So says the plaque on the entrance to the small graveyard near Grand Canyon Village and the National Park headquarters. I am quite certain that only a very select view are allowed to be buried here in the National Park. Dates on toumbstones range into the 1990s.
Graves range from fairly decorated and fairly recent to old and forgotten-looking. Simple graves are outlined with white stones, while others are far more elaborate.
One of the people buried here, perhaps the most notable is Gunnar Widforss, a fairly well known artist of the Grand Canyon and surrounding area:
Born October 21, 1879 Stockholm Sweden
Died November 30, 1934
- - - - - -
Bury this man there?
Here. Here's his place, where meteors shoot, clouds form
lightnings are loosened, stars come and go
lofty designs must close in like effects
leave him still loftier then the world suspects
living and dying.
Along with the above words, you will find a Swedish flag poking out of the ground, and the remains of several paint brushes. Apparently at one time in the distant past, the grave was much more obvious due to the number of paint brushes sticking out of the ground, but on the day I visited there was only the decayed remains of a single brush that was most obvious.
There is a primary gravel pathway that loops through the graveyard, and there are secondary smaller branch pathways that lead off of this, to allow some grave visitation without actually walking on any of the other graves.
To get here, follow the signs to the Shrine of the Ages, which is slightly west of the National Park headquarters. The west side of the Shrine of the Ages faces the entrance to the graveyard. The shuttle bus stop for the park headquarters is a short distance to the south, near the parking lot.
This untamed territory is some of the most rugged and rough terrain in the US. It has not roads going through an area of 50 miles each way. There is perimeter road of Hwy 89 and Hwy 89A going around the outside in a circle. Any adventure sought is to walk in
If you want a place very few people make it to which gives you a birds eye view of the river then Toroweap is the place. Why few people get to it is because it is at the end of a 60 mile one way dirt road. This is not for the casual, oh lets try it kind of trip. Go prepared since it is remote and help may be miles and miles away. What you get at the end is a 3000 foot drop off straight down to the Colorado River. Just looking at the pictures gives me vertigo. For my kids it was grand adventure, and I made sure they crawled to get their pictures. No running here. There is a ranger station, which may or may not be manned and apparently for the truly adventurous you can hike to the bottom.
We decided to go to Grand Canyon on a labor day weekend within the same week, on that Wednesday...more
With only 1 place to stay at the bottom of the canyon in a national park that has over 5 million...more
Parashant National Monument, PO Box 910088, St. George, UT 84791-0088, Arizona, United States
Good for: Solo